After the madness that is the Black Friday/Cyber Monday festival of consumerism, where LEGO.con had queues to browse, short stocked digital discount vouchers, and very few sets that might appeal to the AFOL, we say farewell to the Extremely Cute Charles Dickens Tribute book, and say hello to a winter seasonal gift with purchase, 40416 Ice Skating Rink.
Nothing says Christmas holidays in Australia quite like a couple ice skating on a frozen pond. But it continues a theme of the Winter Village sets, associated with gifts with purchase from lego.com during the prechristmas rush.
And so in December, we have this delightful kinetic vignette, featuring two pirouetting skaters making their way around a frozen pond, surrounded by snow drifts. A skate rental stall is currently unattended.
Opening the box reveals around 300 parts, including 2 minifigures. The minifigures are wearing what I would describe as ‘Ugly Knitted Sweater prints’ I love them! I particularly like the zippered cardigan, and am delighted to see the scarf in red (probably not its first time, just the first time I have seen it!
The elements revealed the makings of a winter landscape: white for the snowdrift, Green for the snow covered ground, and transparent blue for the ice. And Splat gears!
We build up our base, with the gears meshing together, to turn the 4×4 turntable.
We cover up the base with our frozen pond. The turntable still turns, and we attach a 2×8 plate on it. In the middle is a round tile with hole in it, and on either end are the 2 small splat gears.
The central gear meshes with outer gears. the central axle is pushed down, into a plate with an x-hole. The round brick is pushed down and fixes down the large gear- preventing it from turning.
The implication of this is that as the turntable rotates, the small gears ‘roll’ around the fixed central gear. We also build up a small stall.
We add some small trees, as well as a new lamp post, as well as a fountain to the centre of the pond. Rotating the outer/lower gear results in the skaters (fixed to the rotating smaller gears) spinning round, as the revolve around the central fountain.
This street lamp is a new one for the winter village. You can see my previous discussion of winter village lamp posts here. Every year the design team come up with new designs for the lamps in the winter village.
The pine trees are a smaller version of the tree seen in the Elf Club House: a snot brick trunk, with wedge plates covered in sheese slopes on the sides. This provides another reminder that 2 of these bricks, with 2 plates in between allows you to plate a plate on the side.
I find the completed model quite delightful: our characters having fun on the ice, spinning around and around. They look so happy!
Overall, this is a delightful set: an interesting build, and the functionality as a kinetic sculture could be worth adapting for your own models in the future.
Kinetic sculptures have really taken off this year, crossing themes: not only here, but also the Harry Potter Hedwig set, and of course the Super Mario NES/Retro TV set.
The VIP Weekend/Black Friday-cybermonday promotion weekends were marred somewhat by the rapid pace at which stock was depleted, especially for popular 18+ sets. Not everything has been replaced in the storre yet, but if you still have some LEGO Shopping to do, this might be a nifty bit of encouragement. Or not.
What do you think of this set? Why not leave your comments below, and until next time,
I’d like to thank the LEGO Group for providing this set for review. All opinions are my own.